Maya - Plugin Settings

The plug-in preferences can be accessed from the menu Window -> Rendering Editors -> Maxwell Render. The pop-up has two options: Maxwell Settings for accessing general plug-in preferences and Search Paths for configuring the paths to be used when searching for external dependencies such as textures. The settings window looks like this:

General Settings

Verbose Export

When this is on, any warnings generated during the export process are printed in the script editor window. Turn it off to suppress them.

Bring Rendered Image

When enabled, the plug-in brings back the rendered image into the Render View after Maxwell is closed.

Auto-Open Render View

If this is off, the plug-in doesn't open the render view after the render is done. The image is still brought back if the above option is on, but the view must be opened manually if it's hidden.

Expand Env. Variables

If a path to an external dependency contains an environment variable, the variable is normally expanded to its value before the path is written to the exported MXS or MXM file. Uncheck this option to keep the variables as they are and leave Maxwell to perform the expansion.

No Expand on MXM Export

When the above setting is on, you can explicitly turn off expansion only for exporting MXM material files, so that environment variables are processed by the application which will read the exported file.

Override Temp Directory / Temp Directory

These controls allow you to specify a directory to be used for temporary files created by the plug-in. Normally, the temporary directory specified by the operating system is used.

Update Settings

Check Automatically

The plug-in normally checks for new versions at every GUI mode startup (no checks are performed in batch rendering mode). This control can be used to disable update notifications.

"Check now" Button

Press this button to perform an update check. If no newer version is available, you will be told so using a dialog box. If an update is available, the same dialog box used for automatic checks will be shown:

The first button will open a browser window containing the change list for the new version. The second button will download the installer for the new version (for the current OS) using the default web browser. The "Don't notify me" checkbox can be used to suppress prompts about the current update. When an even newer update is published, the notification will be shown again.

Swatch Rendering


This setting controls how swatches for the Layered material are rendered. On Demand mode renders the swatches only when the Update Preview button is pressed. Automatic mode refreshes the swatch whenever a material attribute is changed.


Set this to Draft to use the preview (RS0) engine or to Production to use the normal Maxwell engine. Draft mode is faster and usually sufficient for material previews.

Sampling Level / Render Time

Preview rendering stops when the target level is reached or after the specified time expires, whichever occurs first.


Controls how many threads to use for preview rendering. Set to 0 to create one thread for each processor core.


The resolution of the rendered preview.

Preview Scene

The path to a MXS file which is used as the preview scene. This scene must contain a material called preview which will be replaced by the material being rendered. If no such material is present, swatch rendering fails.

Viewport Representation

Bake Texture Resolution

The resolution of the textures generated for viewport previewing of the Maxwell Layered Material node. One texture is allocated for each node. The textures have 4 bytes per pixel, so to compute the video memory needed by the viewport preview, multiply the number of materials by the resolution and by 4. For example, 50 materials will need 200 MB of memory at 1024x1024.

Viewport Texture Resolution

The maximum resolution for loaded textures. Normally, when loading texture files from disk, the complete uncompressed image will be stored in video RAM. However, if you have many large textures, you can quickly run out of memory (a single 4k texture needs 64 MB of video memory). Use this control to limit the size of the textures.



For faster results you can set FIRE to render at a fraction of the viewport resolution and then upscale the image.


Set the number of threads to use in FIRE. Use 0 to autodetect the number of processor cores and use one thread per core.

Max Sampling Level / Max Time

Stop after the specified sampling level is reached or the maximum time expires, whichever comes first.

Search Paths

Additional search paths for missing resources can be configured by using the menu command Window -> Rendering Editors -> Maxwell Render -> Search Paths. These search paths are also stored inside the written MXS files, so that Maxwell can perform the same search if rendering happens at a later time or on a different machine.